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How did I learn to read?

elchiang's picture

            I really enjoyed Tuesday’s lecture in class by Amy because I found the information on the traditional literacy process very interesting. Furthermore, it reminded me why I do not desire to be a traditional educator. If I could achieve her level of knowledge on reading and the reading process, I would consider being a teacher, but I over analyze too much to be able to be a good teacher in action. Being able to think about Tuesday’s lecture in comparison to Thursday’s lecture, I think about learning in a classroom versus learning a new type of capital that the women in Zimbabwe acquired through the women relatives in their lives.

This also brings me to the topic of social and cultural capital. Do we learn most of our social and cultural capital at school or at home? This is the same for learning to read. What kind of exposure does the student have to print and parent participation in the process? One lecture in some ways shows what happens in the classroom while the other lecture shows the experiences that we can gain outside of the classroom. Perhaps our job is to bring both together. How much is it the teacher’s responsibility to expose students to social and cultural capital? Through many academic teachings a teacher does exposure students to this type of knowledge; however, in direct comparison to the women in Zimbabwe, why do schools no longer have a home economics class that potentially teachers students how to knit and crochet. Also, do students learn most of this capital from social interaction within the school rather than by a teacher?

I read a study for my educational psychology class that showed the disconnect between how a teacher teaches students to read and how parents expose their child to reading and print in minority families especially. I think of my own reading process, and I remember having trouble with reading comprehension. I also grew up having both English and Chinese books in my house. The reason my reading improved was due to having a reading tutor that came to our house to help me. My parents recognized their inability to help me succeed in school and had the monetary means to find other people to help me. I feel really grateful for their foresight, and I see how I benefit from it now. I’m going to try to answer my questions this week by perhaps tweeting a question about other people’s reading processes and literary experiences in the home versus the classroom. 


alesnick's picture

connecting in and out of school literacy learning

I appreciate this thoughtful blog post and the way you mine and revisit class and home experiences to generate new understandings and questions about educational access and attainment.  Nice going!